Did anyone know that I was on a NY adventure over the weekend? If you did, you had one up on Lars who I forgot to tell. … oops – Last week I put out a general call to all my NY friends that “I’m here! Let us do something!” and took the plans from that as they came. There was one friend I was hopeful had time since I usually see them at Pennsic but I know she can’t come this year and just like good things do – it all fell into place.
She had plans to go see Amma, the hugging saint (mentioned passingly on Orange is the New Black) and was happy to have company and rolled it into a sleepover. That decided for me that I would take the train rather than drive because just parking in a parking garage is scary (imagine black diamond ski slope pitch ending in a brick wall) but I also didn’t even want to know what the fee for overnight parking might be! So, rather than face driving stress, I choose to bring 3 little girls on a train with no stroller and only the luggage we could easily carry. Not really all that hard for just overnight, it would have been simple if the essentials for an over night did not include; a zebra, an owl, a bunny, a sock monkey, a teddy and 2 medium sized blankets. I decided in for a penny – why not pack some pony dolls too and that was a great choice because it gave them something to play with in a ‘grown up’ house and waiting for the Amma hug.
Niamh stepped up her big girl game and really was quite responsible and helped a lot. She carried her backpack and held sisters hands and didn’t second guess my every word when I made them run through a variety of man-made obstacles while I was recalling ancient knowledge of what is where in Penn station. She even got into hailing taxi’s,
I remember when she hid behind me when there was a new person in the room… We successfully arrived at our friends place giving me a total travel success (so far) score
You can’t beat the view from our friends apartment roof deck but it is hard to tell kids that. For people who still believe in ponies, fairies, rainbows and general child-like wonder it is hard for them to see the value of a gorgeous skyline.
They will figure it out some day. We stayed up way toooo late and mornings are hard so we didn’t end up with an early start but thats ok, we had a good breakfast 🙂
The Amma thing was more a set for the day than a real activity because ::spoiler alert:: if you don’t get there very early and get a good number you will wait 12 hours or more. I could not wait 12 hours…. but we enjoyed the atmosphere and Niamh started to fit the pieces together about strife in the world and kindness – I could see the wheels turning as she heard about Tsunami relief and homes for the homeless and food for the hungry and it seems she figured out that there are people who suffer and die in the world. We got our tokens and hung out for an hour and a half listening to the opening message and watching the people and figured we were safe to go elsewhere for at least 4 hours so off to the children’s museum of Manhattan we went!
We are members of the MN Childrens museum so it was hard to not compare. MN has a nicer space, bigger and more open but NYC has more ‘discovery’ to it with multiple entrances to the same place and a cool outdoor section for water on the multilevel fire escape. Both being in a city they are bound by other buildings and both do a nice job. We enjoyed the Dora section and most of the other exhibits and in 4 hours we saw it all (MN is bigger, or, more entertaining….) But 4 hours was what we were looking for and a good time was had by all.
Around the block was another perfectly unplanned find; Freds Resturant. It won on many levels – it was close, reasonable prices, plenty of space (at 4:30pm), good menu and more importantly good food (awesome mustards) and to top it all off a perfect theme. 2 of 3 kids happily looked at the floor to ceiling pictures of dogs!
What about #3? She passed out after a short fit about quisladellias and slept for the next hour cozy in her sling.
When you miss a meal I’ll save your food but your drink is forfit to your sisters…
Back at Amma we had hope we might get our hug since we got back around 6 and were within 15 letters of our spot. It took over 2 hours to move up 5 letters and while they were enjoyable hours I did the math and at that rate we would miss the last train back to Sayville. We cut our losses and hugged our friend instead and dashed to a cab. A trip full of public transit is not complete without a full out run at some point but thankfully I have fast kids.
My nightmare scenario for the return trip was not crazy off the wall kids, it was kids that fell asleep that I could not wake up to make the transfer. That’s why I was so happy to see this pup; Lulubell Blue, who entertained and was entertained by my kids for the first leg of the trip.
I was hoping for more sleepy faces on the second half but you can’t win them all and all three were bouncing off the train at 10pm. Home to bed and a massive glass of wine and our adventure was at a conclusion.
post script – Fiona made up some of that sleep debt with a 4 hour nap today
PPS. 4 hour naps = extra laundry
PPSS. The Amma thing is actually a pretty cool vibe. Very cool and mellow and she actually does sit and give real hugs until everyone willing to wait is hugged. They had it on screens so you can see the love she puts into each hug. I might make it a point to try again some day and if so, I’m getting there super early and bringing my book~